Greek and Roman Warfare

Spring 2014

HIEU 3021

Greek and Roman Warfare

J. E. Lendon

A survey of the military history of the classical world from Homeric times to the fall of the Roman Empire in the West.  Topics include Homeric warfare, the Greek phalanx, Greek trireme warfare, the Macedonian phalanx, rise and evolution of the Roman legion, Roman military equipment, Roman imperial army, defense of Roman frontiers, and Roman military decline in late antiquity.  Themes include influence of social and cultural factors on methods of warfare, relationship of technology to warfare, and the birth and development of tactics and strategy.  Familiarity with the outlines of Greek and Roman history is useful.

Requirements:  reading of c. 220 pages a week, midterm, and final exam, and two seven‑page papers.

Ancient readings--all in translation--include selections from:

Julius Caesar
Ammianus Marcellinus

Modern readings include:

  •  J. Warry, Warfare in the Classical World
  • J. E. Lendon, Soldiers and Ghosts:  A History of Battle in Classical Antiquity
  • V. D. Hansen, The Western Way of War:  Infantry Battle in Classical Greece
  • D. Engels, Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army
  • E. N. Luttwak, The Grand Strategy of the Roman Empire

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University of Virginia
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